ClearBank is something of an enabler within the financial services industry, helping fellow institutions – fintechs, crypto platforms, banks and credit unions among them – to offer real-time payments and innovative banking products.
And the organisation has been unequivocal about its ambitions for 2024, with plans to continue expanding across Europe, building on the success of its UK operations.
But elsewhere, ClearBank is taking on the challenges associated with international payments by partnering with LemFi, a leading fintech platform on a mission to transform financial services for immigrants.
The collaboration sees ClearBank providing LemFi with agency banking services, powering its e-wallet offering in the UK to give African immigrants access to an alternative to traditional banking.
“We're excited about enabling LemFi to deliver on its mission through flexible, secure and compliant banking infrastructure,” says John Salter, Chief Customer Officer at ClearBank.
“ClearBank is dedicated to partnering with organisations which make banking services more accessible, particularly to previously underserved populations. We’re thrilled to continue and expand our work with LemFi, not just as a business venture but as an opportunity to serve markets considered hard to reach.”
LemFi: Serving the underbanked
After discovering a sizeable segment of the immigrant population was underbanked, LemFi was established in 2020 to assist those who had previously been forgotten or ignored.
While originally focused on offering payments services for the African diaspora across North America and Europe, in 2022 LemFi acquired UK-based Rightcard Payment Services, which holds an EMI licence, allowing it to provide customers with e-wallets.
Then, last year, LemFi raised US$33 million in a Series A funding round led by Left Lane Capital, resulting in an expanded mission to build the future of international payments for everyone.
ClearBank was selected as agency banking partner due to its reputation for facilitating robust payments and advanced banking infrastructure which supports local virtual accounts and access to secure UK payment rails.
And the partnership has gone from strength to strength, with payments volumes reaching 550,000 transactions in September 2023 and 37,000 virtual accounts held by a continually-growing customer base.
“At LemFi, our mission has always been to make financial services accessible to everyone,” adds Ridwan Olalere, CEO at LemFi.
“By partnering with ClearBank, and leveraging its technology and banking licence, we are building a proposition that improves the quality and accessibility of financial services for emerging market immigrants. We’re delighted with our relationship so far and, as we continue to grow, we’re looking forward to expanding the relationship even further.”
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